Cell Tower Radiation Danger and Solutions Proposed to Government - Prof. Girish Kumar - May 2012

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Mobile Tower Radiation Hazards and Solutions Proposed to Government. Following presentation was made to Shri Milind Deora, honorable Minister of State for IT and Communication and DOT (Department of Telecommunications) India

Prof. Girish Kumar from IIT Bombay has written down some simple solutions to reduce radiation hazard from cell phones.

Step 1 - Convince the operators to reduce the transmitted power from current 20W/carrier to max. 1 to 2 W especially in the dense urban area.

It is very simple to implement - all they have to do is to remove the power amplifier or reduce the gain of the amplifier.

Lots of other benefits of reducing the power - cooling of the amplifier will not be required, then it may not require Air conditioner. Total power requirement will be reduced, so Diesel Generator is not required and solar panel can meet this requirement. Operators can claim carbon
credit and it truely leads to Green Telecom. You can see the attached TRAI-Green-Telecom-openho use-GKreport.pdf

Disadvantage of reducing the power - range will reduce. So people living at larger distance may have signal problem initially.
Operators have to install more number of towers or they can provide low power repeaters/boosters/signal enhancers, which will cost them more money.

Step 2 - Radiation measurements have to be done at residences, offices,schools, hospitals. If the power density level is still high (i.e,more than 0.1 to 1 milliwatts/sq.m after reduction of the transmitted power, then either towers have to be relocated or height of the towers has to be increased or direction of the antenna has to be hanged. Again, any of these steps will require additional investment.

People have to decide
1. Health versus wealth.
2. Good cell phone connectivity at the expense of health of people living near cell tower or somewhat poor connectivity for the people living at larger distance from the tower.




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Cell Tower Radiation Danger and Solutions Proposed to Government - Prof. Girish Kumar - May 2012

  1. 1. Dangers of Radiation by Cell Towers in a Densely Populated Mumbai Prof. Girish Kumar IIT Bombay Tel: (022) 2576 7436 gkumar@ee.iitb.ac.in
  2. 2. WHO: Cell phone use can increase cancer riskOn 31 May, 2011, International Agency for Research onCancer (IARC), a part of WHO designates cell phones as"possible human carcinogen” [Class 2B] Found evidenceof increase in glioma and acoustic neuroma brain cancer formobile phone Warning from Blackberry
  3. 3. Cell Tower RadiationAntennas on Cell tower transmit in the frequencyrange of:• 869 - 890 MHz (CDMA)• 935 - 960 MHz (GSM900)• 1805 – 1880 MHz (GSM1800)• 2110 – 2170 MHz (3G)
  4. 4. Cell Phone/Tower Statistics,India - 2012 Population - 1.2 billion Mobile Towers -5.0 lakh Subscribers - 900+ Million
  5. 5. Radiation Pattern of AntennaBeam is wide Main beam is narrow with secondary side lobes
  6. 6. Radiation Pattern of a Cell Tower Antenna Primary Lobe Very High High Medium Low Secondary LobesPropagation of "main beam“ from antenna mounted on a tower or roof top People living within 50 to 300 meter radius are in the high radiation zone (dark blue) and are more prone to ill-effects of electromagnetic radiationPower varies by 1/R², where R = Distance from tower
  7. 7. CASE STUDY Usha Kiran Building, Worli, Mumbai Usha Kiran BuildingSix cancer cases in consecutive floors (5th, 6 th, 7th, 8th and 10 th)directly facing and at similar height as the mobile phone towers offour telecom companies placed on the roof of opposite building.
  8. 8. EMF Radiation Standards (for GSM900) Country Milliwatt / m² Watts / m²INDIA (adopted ICNIRP) 4500 4.5 (f/200)INDIA (Proposed 1/10th of ICNIRP) 450 0.45 (f/2000)AUSTRALIA (New South Wales proposed) 0.01 0.00001AUSTRIA (Salzburg city) 1 0.001BELGIUM 45 to 1125 0.045 to 1.125BELGIUM (Luxembourg) 24 0.024BIO-INITIATIVE REPORT (Outdoor) 1 0.001BIO-INITIATIVE REPORT (Indoor) 0.1 0.0001CANADA (Toronto Board of Health - proposed) 100 0.1CHINA 400 0.4FRANCE (Paris) 100 0.1GERMANY (ECOLOG 1998 - Precautionary Recommendation) 90 0.09GERMANY (BUND 2007 - Precautionary Recommendation) 0.1 0.0001ITALY 100 0.1NEW ZELAND (Aukland) 500 0.5POLAND 100 0.1RUSSIA 100 0.1SWITZERLAND (Apartments, Schools, Hospitals, Offices & Playgrounds) 42 0.042USA (Implementation is strict)* 3000 3 (f/300)Final RecommendationsIndoor - include apartments, schools, hospitals, offices & playgrounds. 0.1 0.0001Outdoor - where people spend few minutes a day. 10 0.01*USA - FCC Guidelines: f/300 if averaged over 6 minutes and f/1500 if averaged over 30 min
  9. 9. Tower Installation : USA (FCC Guidelines) vs India Cellular cell site towers are Cellular cell site towers aretypically 50-200 feet high. even 5-10 feet high; on sides of building and outside window. In urban areas, cell sites In INDIA, cell sites transmitcommonly emit an ERP of 10 100’s of Watts of power withwatts per channel or less. An ERP antenna gain of more than 10, soof 10 watts corresponds to an ERP > 1000 Wattsactual radiated power of around 1watt depending on the type ofantenna used.http://www.fcc.gov/guides/human-exposure-rf-fields-guidelines-cellular-and-pcs-sites
  10. 10. ICNIRP GuidelinesIndia adopts ICNIRP guideline for Power density (Pd) = Frequency /200, frequency is in MHz (averaged over 6 min exposure)ICNIRP has given following disclosure:ICNIRP is only intended to protect the public againstshort term gross heating effects and NOT againstbiological effects such as cancer and genetic damagefrom long term low level microwave exposure frommobile phones, masts and many other wireless devices.http://ww.icnirp.de/documents/emfgdl.pdf
  11. 11. Power Absorbed by Human BodyMicrowave power absorbed by human body if exposed to so calledsafe radiation level adopted in India, which is f/200, where f is in MHz? ICNIRP Guideline – Power received (Pr) by 56" X At 940 MHz, Power human body will be density (Pd) is [Pr = Pd x Area] = 6.75 34" 4.7W/m² Watts in one sec. Area = 1.43 m² Microwave oven: 700 to 1000 W. In one day, microwave energy With say 60% efficiency, microwave absorbed will be [6.75 Watts x power output is say 500 W. 60x60x24 sec] = 583.2 KW-sec. This implies that human body can be safely kept in a microwave oven for 1166 secs = 19 minutes per day
  12. 12. Radiation Measurement at various locationsCumulative Readings including CDMA, GSM 900, and GSM 1800 Reading in Readings in Readings in Location dBm W/m2 microW/m2Terrace, New Rajindra Nagar, Delhi +09 0.561 5,61,479Resident 1, Bedroom - Chowpatty +06 0.281 2,81,406Resident 2, Bedrooms - Opera House +05 0.223 2,23,529Resident 3, Bedroom – ML Dahanukar Marg +05 0.223 2,23,529Delhi-Gurgaon Highway - near Toll (3 towers) 0 0.0706 70,686Vashi Bridge - after Railway Station -4 0.0282 28,274Resident 3, 4th Fl: Sergean House Lady w/cancer -6 0.0177 17,756Resident 4, Dadar East, Lady w/cancer -6 0.0177 17,756Resident 5, Opposite roof, Rane Society, Powai -10 0.00706 7,069Ustav Chowk, Kharghar -12 0.00446 4,460Govandi- Residential towers - near Indian Oil -14 0.002814 2,814Lower Parel Employees-headaches, forgetfulness -16 0.001776 1,776Vashi Highway – near Turbhe -18 0.001120 1,120Nerul Bridge -20 0.000707 707Vivero pre School (opposite powai lake) -22 0.000446 446Rajeev Gandhi nagar -26 0.000177 177On road near Evita (Hiranandani Building) -28 0.000112 112D-Mart,Hiranandani, Powai -34 0.0000280 28IIT Bombay School of Management - Entrance -46 0.00000178 1.78
  13. 13. Health concerns with current Safety Guidelines Data from Firstenberg 2001
  14. 14. BIOLOGICAL EFFECTS Most common complaints:•Sleep disruption •Dizziness•Headache •Palpitations of the heart•Concentration •Visual disorders•Forgetful memory •Cardiovascular problems•Depression •Buzzing in the head•Fatigue •Altered reflexes Many of these are related to changes in the electrical activity of the brain
  15. 15. BIOLOGICAL EFFECTSNeurodegenerative Disorders –Alzheimer, ParkinsonsImmune System Degradation More VulnerableTinnitus and Ear DamageIrreversible infertility More damage for ChildrenEffect on SkinDNA Damage DNA DamageIncrease in Cancer risk
  16. 16. Effect of Cell Towers (some references) 8 times increased Risk is higher Women living near cancer risk for exposure after 6-10 years of towers had 10 times > 1000µW / m2 =1 mW / m2 exposure increased cancer riskhttp://www.getmefacts.info/files/emfposter.pdf updated on 11Sep’11
  17. 17. Effect on EnvironmentHave you ever seen any bird near cell towers?May be not, because birds have more volume and lessweight, so heating effect is very fast. 4 cell towers near Gurgaon-Delhi Toll Naka Output of most of fruit bearing trees drastically reduced from 100% to < 5% after 2.5 years of cell tower installation.
  18. 18. Expert Group reported impacts of communicationtowers on Wildlife including Birds and Bees (2011)Out of 919 research studies collected:593 - report Impact; 130 - No Impact; 196 - Inconclusive
  19. 19. DOT Inter-Ministry Committee (IMC) accepts cell phone and tower radiation hazard IMC Report ON EMF RADIATION was uploaded on DOT website in Jan. 2011. Mentions several health hazards due to radiation on Human Health and Environment (pages 12-27). Mentioned Bio-initiative report 2007 recommendation 1000 microW/m2 for outdoor cumulative RF exposure (Page 32). Yet recommended RF exposure limits in India may be lowered toonly 1/10th of the existing reference level, which will be 0.92W/m2 for GSM1800 (Page 33)
  20. 20. (taken by TERM at Haji Ali & opp Sahyadri on 22nd Sept ‘11 in front of Shri Milind Deora)Standard/ Reading CommentsLocation (in microW/m2)Indian Guideline - 4,700,000 Equivalent to putting a person in microwaveICNIRP’ 98 oven for 19 min/day.IMC recommendation - 470,000 However, the report mentions several healthJan. 2011 hazards at 1000 µW/m2.Haji Ali Juice Center 85,000 This level is very high but TERM says it is safe as it is within ICNIRP guidelineOpp. Sahyadri State 42,260 Cancer case in this house -Guest House “..same as above..”Range at which health >10,000 Several Cancer Cases observed in Indiaproblems have been >100 Headaches, concentration problem, fatigue,observed miscarriage, joint pains etc Disclaimer – Symptoms based on Individual sensitivitySafe Radiation Density 100 For long term continuous exposurelevel (as per Bio-Initiative Report 2007)
  21. 21. • Convince operators to reduce transmitted power fromStep 1 20W/carrier to max. 1 -2 W in dense urban area. HOW TO IMPLEMENT ? Remove the power amplifier or reduce gain of amplifier.ADDITIONAL BENEFITS: Power requirement willCooling of the amplifier Operators can claim reduce, so Dieselwill not be required then carbon credit and it Generator not required. it may not require Air truely leads to Green Solar panel can meet conditioner. Telecom this requirementYou can see TRAI-Green-Telecom-Openhouse-GK ReportDISADVANTAGES OF REDUCING POWER: Operators have to Range will reduce. install more number of People living at larger Which will cost them low power transmitter distance may have MORE MONEY! or they can providesignal problem initially. low power repeaters
  22. 22. • Radiation measurements have to be done atStep 2 residences, offices, schools, hospitals. HOW TO IMPLEMENT ? Towers have to be relocated or If power density level is still high (i.e, more Height of the than 100-1,000microW/m² after reduction of towers has to the transmitted power, then either: be increased or Direction of the antenna has to be changed. **Again, any of these steps will require additional investment.
  23. 23. PEOPLE HAVE TO DECIDE:1. Health vs wealth.2. Good cell phone connectivity at the expense of health of people living near cell tower or somewhat poor connectivity for the people living at larger distance from the tower. Thank you

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